Colombia’s Avianca Airlines and ATR have signed a 10-year maintenance contract covering the Medellin-based carrier’s new fleet of ATR 72-600s. Under the so-called Global Maintenance Agreement, ATR will provide repair and overhaul services for the fleet and completely manage line-replaceable units, the maintenance and availability of aircraft parts and components, the advanced exchange pool of services, and a parts inventory at its logistics center in Miami. In late 2012 Avianca signed a purchase agreement with ATR for a fleet of 15 ATR 72-600s, and took an option for 15 more.
Johan Bank has been appointed vice president of engineering at KLM Engineering and Maintenance. With a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the HTS engineering school in Haarlem and a master’s degree in energy production, Bank began his professional career at KLM Flight Operations as a flight engineer on DC-10s. Most recently Banks was director of MRO at KLM Engineering & Maintenance’s engines division, where he oversaw all production processes and implementation of Six Sigma methodology.
Air France Industries KLM Engineering & Maintenance (AFI KLM E&M) and Sabena Technics have reached an agreement under which the Franco-Dutch group will take control of Barfield, the North American subsidiary of Sabena Technics. The transaction is scheduled to close in the first half, subject to regulatory approval.
UK regional airline Flybe has raised almost $260 million in fresh capital through a share flotation launched February 20 in London. The company, which has been battling to rebuild its business model with an aggressive program of cost cutting, is issuing a total of up to 141.5 million new shares to raise £155.6 million. The offer price on February 20 was 110p per share, representing a 7.2-percent discount on the stock’s 118.5p mid-market price on February 19.
As Indonesia’s national carrier Garuda initiates efforts to enhance service through increased frequencies and destinations, in anticipation of its move to join the SkyTeam global alliance in March and the ASEAN Open Skies in 2015, it is looking at adding around 200 to 250 aircraft to its fleet between 2015 and 2025.
The carrier, which is to soon finalize its plans for a mix of narrow- and widebody aircraft, is expected to seek board approval this year to increase its fleet to 350 to 400 from its present 133 by 2025, CEO Emirsyah Satar told Reuters in Hong Kong.
For Franco-Italian regional turboprop manufacturer ATR (Booth E01), the Asia Pacific region now takes top spot in its geographic sales rankings, but orders from China still seem to be eluding the company. Last year ATR saw orders and deliveries grow again, reaching record levels and steady profitability, but it has yet to convince shareholders Airbus Group and Finmeccanica to launch a new larger turboprop in the 90-seat category.
Asia Pacific governments have long considered development of their aerospace industries a prime opportunity for technology renewal and overall economic growth. Several big OEMs have answered the call to help, allowing countries such as Singapore and Malaysia to develop into some of the world’s most active aerospace manufacturing, services and technology centers. Others, such as the Philippines, Thailand and Indonesia, show particular promise due to their rapidly expanding economies and young, energetic populations hungry for jobs.
Business aircraft traffic in Europe last month climbed by 2.4 percent year-over-year, logging 42,623 departures, according to the latest data from Hamburg, Germany-based WingX Advance. “This was a welcome change to declines through most of the year, with 2013 activity down 2 percent overall from 2012,” it said.
Norwich-based KLM UK Engineering has opened a facility dedicated to dismantling and recycling aircraft. The center is one of only a few in Europe.
The MRO is already licensed to service aircraft from the day they enter service, and this new dismantling operation positions the MRO to offer “cradle-to-grave” service over an aircraft’s potential life of 20 years or 18 million air miles.
The company works mostly with Boeing 737s, Airbus A320s and BAe 146/Avro RJs.
Resolved on tapping the booming Central Asian market, global alliances SkyTeam, OneWorld and Star Alliance have approached Kazakhstan national carrier Air Astana with offers to join their ranks. In response, the airline recently commissioned U.S.-based Seabury Group to prepare a report on whether it should enter an alliance “and which one, because all alliances want us to join them,” Air Astana president Peter Foster told AIN in Astana recently.